Baker Acted!: Three Days in a Madhouse
By: April Showers and Michael T. Sylvester
About the Book
Baker Acted! Three Days in a Madhouse is a true story about the Florida mental health system. When April Showers stops by Ivy Green to retrieve a copy of her psychosocial report that had been assessed a few days prior, she is wrongfully Baker Acted and committed to the hospital for three days. During those tumultuous three days of frustration, no one on staff takes the time to understand her feelings, and what’s worse, inside she meets others who are similar situations.
A poignant statement on the sorry state of mental health services in the United States, as you read Baker Acted! Three Days in a Madhouse, you can imagine the hopelessness, the desperation, and the despair that a place like Ivy Green brings to its patients. See the world through April’s eyes and receive a first-hand account of what it’s like to be prisoner in a madhouse.
About the Author
April Showers lives in Central Florida with her emotional support dog, Dottie. She is recently divorced after 29 years of marriage. Her husband could not take the extreme highs and lows of her bipolar disorder. In extreme highs of mania, Showers would be uncontrollable, and in her dark times of depression, she would not get out of bed for days and neglect herself and her household.
Showers was diagnosed at the age of 45 with Bipolar I disorder and put on medication. The youngest of seven children, she believes mental illness runs in her family, as two other siblings suffer from schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. Showers suspects that her father was an undiagnosed bipolar who self-medicated with alcohol.
Showers has a bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education and a master’s degree in Public Administration. She was a school teacher for over 15 years before being fired from her teaching job due to a manic episode. She currently works as a peer counselor for the local behavioral health center. She absolutely loves her job and finds it extremely rewarding.
Showers has a good support system of family and close friends who tell her when they see signs of the illness creeping in. Her Catholic faith got her through the dark times of depression when she was suicidal and kept her safe during the extreme highs of mania.
It is her hope that by sharing her story, she can convey to others that there is hope for people living with Bipolar I disorder, and April is proof of the resiliency of the human psyche.